An independent clause that refers to a hypothetical situation contingent on another set of circumstance.

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Would vs Will in future events

What is the difference between the following: Sorry, mate. I wouldn't be able to come for dinner. Sorry, mate. I won't be able to come for dinner.
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3answers
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Is “even if…” followed by present or future tense? [duplicate]

Is it correct to say: even if only James Bond will benefit from... or even if only James Bond benefits from...
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4answers
543 views

Past conditional statements

What is the difference between the following two statements? If I went home for dinner, I took a glass of soft drink. If I went home for dinner, I would take a glass of soft drink. Are both ...
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3answers
977 views

What's an example of good style for an “if/then” statement?

I'm not sure what's common for conditional statements, with and without alternative consequent clauses, in speech—even my own—but as a computer programmer, I'm niggled whenever I have to write English ...
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5answers
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'became' vs. 'become'

The following two sentences seem to have the same general meaning to me: If I ever became a musician, I would grow my hair If I ever become a musician, I will grow my hair I was wondering ...
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2answers
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Must conditional sentences begin with “if?”

I've been looking at conditional sentences (conditional clauses). Every example I've see is along the lines of, "if [x] then [y]." I've seen alternatives/substitutes for the if part: were I ...
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5answers
870 views

Is it correct to say: “I would do something, be it me”?

I mean that "I would do something, if it only were me. But it was not me, so I've done nothing".
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5answers
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“If I knew you're coming I wouldn't have come”

Is the statement If I knew you're coming I wouldn't have come correct? Should we use If I had known you're coming, I wouldn't have come instead? Please consider American-British ...
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5answers
959 views

What's the tense for repetitive past action?

In English, "would" usually denotes a conditional voice. "If I were sleepy, I would go to bed." But I've caught myself using it to denote repetitive or habitual past action. "On Thursdays, we would ...
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Using “if” or not in a sentence structure when expressing doubt

I use the following sentence construction a lot. I'm not sure if this is right. I was not aware of any problem until recently I noticed that quite a few of my colleagues used it a little ...
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2answers
483 views

Conditionals in the future

My colleague and I have a hot discussion about which is correct. My version is: If you don't fix the bug I will send you a patch. and his one is: I would send you a patch if you don't fix ...
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Usage of “will” and “would”

Which one is correct? What would I do without you. What will I do without you. You would always be my favorite travel buddy. You will always be my favorite travel buddy.
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Past/Present tense in a conditional statement

I'm not an English speaker. Even though I do understand conditional statements that are written by others but when it comes to my turn I still feel confused and don't really know how to organize it. ...
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in case I won't *

A very quick question: Is it correct to say "In case I won't be able to watch that"? If it's acceptable to say that, what type of sentence is it? UPDATE: As a clarification, I want to say "Can ...
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1answer
922 views

Rule for when to use “could” as a helper?

It would be helpful if you could provide us further details. Is the use of could wrong here? Should it be It would be helpful if you provide us further details. What is the rule when should ...
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13answers
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Why do I instinctively want to use the present tense with a conditional?

My boss is not a native speaker of English, so he often asks me to correct his writing. The problem is, he wants me to explain why I make changes, and doesn't accept "it just sounds better that way" ...
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2answers
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Use of “should have” in conditional sentences

In Return of the Soldier (1918) I came across what appears to be a conditional sentence: I never should have got this telegram if me and my husband hadn't been down there last September and told ...
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1answer
968 views

“If he is polite, then he gets the job”, or “if he be polite, then he gets the job”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When should I use the subjunctive mood? Which sentence is grammatically correct? Which sentence make sense (apart from syntactical analysis)? First? Second? Both of ...
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2answers
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“I would have never said” vs. “I would never say”

I know a lot of questions have been asked about would or would have but I haven't found any answers that help me understand this three-party conversation, with C possibly a native speaker: A: How ...
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3answers
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'Provided that' followed by two conditions

In a sentence where 'provided that' is followed by two conditions, is a second instance of 'that' required, optional or wrong? 1: [statement A], provided that [statement B] and [statement C] ...
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2answers
176 views

If- conditional construct using future events

A friend invited me to his summer house later this summer, so I told him I would if it doesn't overlap with my plans. This is how I stated it: I’d come, if it doesn't overlap with my scheduled ...
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5answers
4k views

A conditional sentence with present perfect

Is it correct to say: If you have finished it by then, I'll come and take it. thus using the present perfect in the "if" clause to mean the future instead of the present?
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4answers
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Placing a comma after a conditional statement

I've always had difficulties in figuring out where commas should be placed. For example, in a phrase containing a conditional statement, how should I write... If they don't arrive by noon, she'll ...
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3answers
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Which tense after 'would I… if… ?'

I am struggling on a sentence here. Let me show u what I come up with; Would I fail if I won't study? In this sentence I am trying to indicate a possibility but I am not sure if I use this part ...
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3answers
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“whether” vs. “if ” [duplicate]

How can I know when should I use whether or if in a sentence? I can not see any difference between whether and if. When should I use each? For me, they are the same and I am not sure if there is a ...
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3answers
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Which of these sentences using “can” or “could” is better?

If you could increase your number of hours to 48/week, it will help you become a more fluent speaker. If you can increase your number of hours to 48/week, it will help you become a more fluent ...
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5answers
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How do the tenses and aspects in English correspond temporally to one another?

Non-native speakers often get confused about what the various tenses and aspects mean in English. With input from some of the folk here I've put together a diagram that I hope will provide some ...
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2answers
494 views

Subjunctive mood, progressive and perfect progressive tense

Are the following usages of subjunctive mood, progressive tense correct? If I be being your wife a shrew, you have the option of divorcing me. If I were being crowned May queen, I would ...
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4answers
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Is the conditional a mood or a tense?

Is the conditional a mood or a tense? I've heard it described in both ways. It seems more like a mood as it is often lumped with hypothetical constructions and the subjunctive mood. I could see it ...
3
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6answers
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“won't” vs. “wouldn't”

Are these two words interchangeable? How do you know when to use one or the other? For some sentences it is easy to know which one to use, but not for others. The type of sentences that are difficult ...
4
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1answer
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Speculative conditional: Why does it use the past tense or past perfect tense?

We use simple past to state a hypothetical present situation that we would like to speculate about (If they were here, I would be happy), past perfect for a hypothetical past (had they been here, I ...
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6answers
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How to correctly write this conditional phrase?

I’m struggling with a conditional clause. This one is easy: If I were you, I would do xyz ... But I have these three statements: I was a student. It was my vacation. My professor ...
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2answers
2k views

“Will have” vs. “Would have”

By the end of the year, I would have attended this school for five years. Of course, the "most" correct way of writing this would be: By the end of the year, I will have attended this school ...
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2answers
501 views

Future tense usage: “When you see it …”

I wonder why the phrase is "When you see it you will shit brix," and not "When you will see it you will shit brix." Is the version with two will incorrect? What grammar rule says that you should not ...
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2answers
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Comma in conditional sentence and in antithesis

I've got a couple questions: Should I always put comma between condition and consequence parts, like in the following sentence: If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask. Should I always ...
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3answers
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When should I use “Would”, “Would have”, “Will”, and “Will have”?

I hope someone, once and for all, can clarify (with examples) the difference in usage of will vs. would vs. would have vs. will have.
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4answers
862 views

“Would have” in conditional clauses

I have been taught to use the if I had form in conditional clauses referring to the past: If the president had asked me, I would have told him the same thing. As far as I can tell though, the ...
5
votes
1answer
975 views

Conditional sentences not starting with “if”

Were I rich, I would live on Long Island. If I were rich, I would live on Long Island. Is the first sentence still used, or is used in particular contexts (in example, to give emphasis to the ...